By Nathan Layne
FORT DODGE, Iowa (Reuters) – Donald Trump, the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, declared on Saturday his intentions to disband a significant Pacific trade pact advocated by U.S. President Joe Biden, should he secure the 2024 election victory and return to the White House.
During a rally in Iowa, Trump voiced his opposition to the regional trade arrangement negotiated by the Biden administration involving 13 other nations, asserting that it would deplete U.S. manufacturing and provoke job losses.
Negotiations regarding the trade components of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF), which aims to provide the region with an alternative to China’s increasing trade influence, encountered obstacles in recent days as certain countries, such as Vietnam and Indonesia, refused to commit to stringent labor and environmental standards.
Trump, who exited the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal with many of the same countries after assuming office in January 2017, pledged to eliminate what he referred to as “TPP Two” immediately upon assuming office.
“Under the next administration… the Biden plan for ‘TPP Two’ will be dead on day one,” Trump declared at a campaign event in Fort Dodge, approximately 94 miles (150 km) north of Des Moines.
“It’s worse than the first one, posing a threat to devastate farmers and manufacturers with another large-scale globalist atrocity designed to accelerate outsourcing to Asia.”
The Biden administration had aimed to finalize crucial sections of its IPEF trade initiative in time for this week’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting. However, trade experts and business groups suggest that election-year pressures and resistance to stringent commitments from some nations make a deal unlikely, despite the administration’s vow to continue negotiations on the ambitious trade deal.
(Reporting by Nathan Layne in Fort Dodge, Iowa; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)